Sunday 10th June 2018, saw Staffordshire FA, Birmingham, Leicestershire, Shropshire, Worcestershire & Herefordshire FA’s all come together to host our 2nd annual female inclusive celebration festival at St. George’s Park.
The festival saw mixed U12’s & u16’s teams take part in the morning session followed by ladies only ability counts teams in the afternoon, seeing over 100 players taking part across the day.
There were more girls involved in the mixed AC teams than the previous year with many being all girls’ teams and it was a fantastic opportunity to celebrate female football in a fun & inclusive environment.
With the world cup round the corner, each team taking part were allocated a country to represent in the festival, teams then took part in round robin fixtures within their age groups with all fixtures focused on participation. At the end of the festival, all players received a medal for taking part and then there was an opportunity for a Q & A session with an England Ladies Deaf Player.
Rebecca Kemp, England international, shared her journey with the players on the day and inspired those taking part to continue playing within the game. There was then an opportunity for players to ask questions to find out more about how Rebecca got involved with football, what age she started her journey and who inspired her to play.
It was fantastic to have Staffordshire teams involved throughout the day, with Lichfield Liberty bringing along their girls U16’s teams in the morning and we had 2x ladies teams taking part in the afternoon Whych Ladies FC & Lichfield Liberty ladies. Both Staffordshire teams are now delivering regular female only opportunities within the local area and are looking for more players to get involved.
We are looking to build on the festival next season, with a view of developing more female only ability counts opportunities next season before the next annual event takes place in Summer 2019.
If you would like to get involved or find out more information regarding local ability counts teams please get in touch.